alexa Public Participation in Environmental Management in China: Status Quo and Mode Innovation
Environmental Sciences

Environmental Sciences

Journal of Pollution Effects & Control

Author(s): Mei Chen, Xin Qian, Longjiang Zhang

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Public participation in environmental management is critically important in the development of a healthy environmental governance system. However, public participation has not been well institutionalized in China and the public’s role in environmental management is limited. Chinese policy-makers and researchers currently face a dilemma wherein they must determine how to fully and effectively involve the public. This paper aims to contribute an innovative approach that can effectively engage the general public, allowing them to participate more in China’s environmental management. In this paper, we first review the current status of environmental management and public participation in China. Based on China’s political and socio-cultural-legal dynamics, an Environmental Community Consultative Group (ECCG) was developed to be an innovative means to engage community members. A pilot study of the ECCG was carried out in Yapu village of Changzhou City in Jiangsu Province. The evaluation of the process and outcome of the ECCG showed that the group’s effectiveness and influence were significant; the ECCG model was a powerful means by which to promote public environmental awareness, improve public environmental behavior and facilitate public engagement in environmental management. But the ECCG is a small local group that may not function well regarding more complex issues covering a much larger area and has limited impact on environmental policy making. The ECCG experience offers the prospect of grassroots involvement in environmental protection for China’s rural areas, while also laying the foundation for further research on community participation in environmental management.

This article was published in Environmental Management and referenced in Journal of Pollution Effects & Control

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